Help me pick a surgery to observe!!

  1. Ok so I'm heading to the OR on Monday for my first ever OR rotation. We only have one this semester so I want to make it count. For you students and current nurses, which of the following would you pick for your OR rotation and why? I'm personally leaning toward pediatric/neuro because I think neuro might be awesome to see but I wanna test myself in peds to see how I handle it. Let me know in the comments

    OR Specialties
    Burns
    Cardiothoracic
    ENT
    General
    GYN
    Neuro
    Ortho
    Peds
    Plastics
    Robotics
    Trauma
    Urology
    Vascular
  2. Visit Sbhayes09 profile page

    About Sbhayes09, CNA

    Joined: Nov '16; Posts: 84; Likes: 43

    35 Comments

  3. by   psu_213
    Do you know what your OR rotation will consist of? Not to be a downer, but my "rotation" consisted of standing in the corner of room for 2 surgeries. One was a hernia repair, the other a lap chole...I saw and did nothing. I'm not trying to kill your enthusiasm--if you are going to be caring for the same pt before and after while observing during the actual procedure, go with what is of greatest interest to you. And consider yourself lucky for having a choice.
  4. by   Sour Lemon
    If you're there for one day, what are the odds all of that will be going on while you're there? And will you actually get to "pick"? I don't remember having a choice of more than two or three procedures, max. Staff may decline to have you there for whatever reason, too.
    Trauma would be the most interesting, to me. Pediatric surgery would be one of my last choices because I remember the rooms being kept very warm.
  5. by   Sbhayes09
    We do not get to do anything of substance but observe. That's enough for me though. Just to be in the room while something like this is happening is a thrill. Thank you for your input .
  6. by   Sbhayes09
    Thank you! It's a very large teaching hospital so we were told to choose a few that interest us and they'd find one for us. We have a great relationship with this hospital so I'm hoping I'm not declined for entry.
  7. by   Sour Lemon
    Now that I think about it, it's the surgeon that makes the experience interesting, or not. The entire team, really, but the surgeon sets the tone. What's actually occurring is not as important. You can't see or follow much unless the team engages you. So, I'd say ask for someone who has a reputation for being engaging.
  8. by   hppygr8ful
    Quote from Sour Lemon
    Now that I think about it, it's the surgeon that makes the experience interesting, or not. The entire team, really, but the surgeon sets the tone. What's actually occurring is not as important. You can't see or follow much unless the team engages you. So, I'd say ask for someone who has a reputation for being engaging.
    So true - when I did a surgery rotation the surgeon told me to put my hands behind my back so as not to touch anything then invited me in for a closer look. It was a great experience.

    Hppy
  9. by   OsceanSN2018
    Anything but ENT & General
  10. by   VivaLasViejas
    I think trauma and neuro would be fascinating. When I was a student I observed two surgeries, a lap chole and a hand surgery. Didn't get to see much of anything because it was feared that a student would contaminate the sterile field (even though sterile procedure had been drilled into us by the skills-lab instructors). So when I became an RN, during orientation I was to do a couple of days in the OR, and I was invited to catheterize the unconscious patient. Guess what I did? Contaminated the sterile field. LOL.
  11. by   springchick1
    The facility may decide for you. We don't allow students in our total joint or spine cases.
  12. by   DowntheRiver
    I third what others say about the surgeon. The surgeries that I saw in school were general surgery (appendix, hernia repair, lap choly) BUT both the surgeon and the CRNA were enthusiastic about teaching so I got to see a lot. Even the techs were engaging and explaining all their instruments. Just remember to stay sterile!
  13. by   Rose_Queen
    You may not be given much of a choice. Here's why:

    1. Infection concerns. That may limit the type of case the facility is willing to allow observers into. In my facility, joints and cardiac are automatic no go for observers.
    2. Staffing. Sorry, but staff on orientation come first. If they need to be in a particular specialty to get the experience, another body is an even bigger distraction.
    3. Staffing. Staff just off orientation are still learning the role and a distraction in the form of an observer can be overwhelming.
    4. Staffing. Some surgeons and staff just aren't going to be the best experience for students.
    5. Scheduling. Depending on when you show up, if you want to see something from start to finish it's going to be a case that starts after you arrive and ends before you leave.
    6. Scheduling. Not all of those are likely to be happening on the same day. Some aren't high volume cases. Some are surgeons who only work in the OR certain days of the week.

    I do recommend heading over to the OR forum and reading the thread (either in the articles tab or the FAQs tab) call "Sooo you're observing in the operating room"
  14. by   Sbhayes09
    Thank you guys for all your input! I probably should have explained better about the choices. We were given a sheet to choose our top three requests. There's no guarantee that we'll get what we choose if it's not available, but they will do everything in their power to make it happen. This is at a teaching hospital so from what I can tell, the surgeons and most of the surgical staff were very accommodating and helpful at orientation. Here's hoping for a positive experience and for my OR rotation to mirror our orientation. I think I'm going to go with neuro, cardiothoracic, and trauma for my top three. I hate a lot of you had bad OR rotation experiences, hopefully you still found your niche .
    Last edit by Sbhayes09 on May 30 : Reason: grammar

close